The Madrid Congress yesterday approved the law that regulates euthanasia, making it possible and free within the public health system. You can request it who suffers from a serious and incurable disease or from a condition in which chronic pain causes a situation of incapacity. The aim, the text says, is to establish the right of Spanish citizens and residents of the kingdom to seek the help of doctors to avoid intolerable suffering.
The standard safeguards conscientious objection by health professionals and, if the Constitutional Court rejects the appeals announced by Vox’s far right, it will go into effect in mid-June.
It will be possible, depending on the health conditions, to either self-inject a lethal substance or receive it from the medical staff. Access to sweet death will have to go through three phases of evaluation by doctors not involved in the case and by a Commission. The patient will also need to confirm his intention four times over the course of five weeks. For this reason, those who ask for euthanasia must be capable of understanding and willing.
The law was born from an initiative of the Socialist Party, the main governing force. According to the latest opinion poll (Ipsos, November 2020) 85% of Spaniards in favor and, as in Italy, the debate has been going on for decades. The 2004 Oscar-winning film Mare Inside, which tells the struggle for euthanasia by Ramon Sanpedro, a Spanish quadriplegic played by Javier Bardem, caused a sensation. Premier Pedro Snchez commented on the measure on Twitter. Today we are a more humane, fair and free country. We have responded to a request widely shared by the company. I thank all those who have fought tirelessly for the right to die with dignity to be recognized in Spain.
202 deputies voted in favor, two abstentions, against 140 of Partido Popular and the right of Vox who have warned against end-of-life tourism, which can drive the most vulnerable to death. The Madrid College of Doctors is also contrary, according to which it goes against the essence of medicine. Clear opposition, in line with the Vatican, of the Spanish Bishops’ Conference: The desperation of the sick should not be underestimated, but there is palliative care.
With this standard Spain is confirmed in the group of countries with the most liberal legislation. In addition to divorce and abortion, heterologous fertilization, sex change and gay marriage are already legal.
Legal euthanasia in Belgium, Canada, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and some US states. In Colombia and Switzerland the practice is allowed, but not regulated. In New Zealand it will be legal from November. In Portugal, three months ago, the Constitutional Court rejected a law similar to the Spanish one. In Italy the Constitutional Court has invited the Parliament to legislate.
March 18, 2021 (change March 18, 2021 | 9:30 pm)